The urban bike magazine

Velo-city Conference 2015 in Nantes: It’s All About Cycling

The Velo-City conference is moving cycling issues forward on a global scale, bringing advocates together with experts, the industry, and policy makers. This year’s Velo-City is held at French Nantes, that claims to be the 7th most bicycle-friendly city. It intends to showcase why that is so while putting some more momentum behind its Cycle Plan.

Delegates from all over the world will gather from June 2 – 5 at Nantes to hear about best practices from the Loire region, meet France as an emerging cycling nation while also drawing inspiration from other delegates’ experiences and findings.

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For the Velo-City’s 21st edition, most speakers come from the continent but also flew in from as far as Brazil, New Zealand, the Ivory Coast, or Taiwan to name but a few. Between speeches, parallel sessions on various issues like infrastructure, data, business models or promising policies will take place. Klick here to see the full programme.

Furthermore, cycling as a joyous and collective experience is an integral part of this international pedalling. The joined bike ride is a must at every Velo-City and will take place on June 3 in Nantes. Apart from speeches and fun activities like bike cinema, an exhibition features over 80 participants and will be open to the public for the first time in the conference series’ history.

Registration is far from free as a three-day pass can cost up to 800 euros. Students, job seekers and people from specific regions are eligible for discounts.

Combining forces at the velo-city conference

The first Velo-city Conference was held in 1980 in the German city of Bremen and eventually led to the founding of the European Cyclist’s Federation (ECF) three years later. The ECF has in turn become one of the driving forces behind the gathering. The conference’s general objectives are to share findings on cycling and cycling policy on an international level, while promoting bicycles as a most beneficial mode of transport. The series also calls for the inclusion of urban cycle planning in all areas of public policy sectors. Over the course of over 20 gatherings, Velo-city played a key role in shaping the idea of a world-wide cycling community with experiences to be shared and worth being put into political practice.

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The conferences now see advocates mingle with stakeholders from the industry and policy makers, leading to more concerted lobbying for cycling, which helps it climb the global agenda. Velo-city has proven particularly inspiring on a local level as it provides a chance for hosting towns and regions to either showcase existing efforts or serve as a starting point for new cycling initiatives based on other’s best practices.

Velo-city Global

Supported by The World Health Organisation and the United Nations, 2010 saw the first Velo-city Global in Copenhagen. Since then, Velo-city conferences are held every year with Europe and the rest of the world taking turns. The global series takes place every even year.

In 2016, Taipei, Taiwan will be the go-to destination for every serious Bike Citizen.

But first, bienvenue à Nantes! Bike Citizens is delighted to be part of the global cycling community once more and has a big booth at the exhibition. Come by La Grande Halle, Box No 7 to see us. À plus!

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Image © Bike Citizens

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Born-Berliner turned Londoner, I love to write about cycling and everything around it because it is a movement for change. It makes you happy, too.

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